In the Netherlands, every resident or employee is obliged to take a basic health insurance to cover medical costs from, for example, visits to a general practitioner or the hospital. The Dutch government decides on the cover provided by this package and health insurance companies are obliged to accept everyone who meets the requirements, regardless of age or state of health. As not all care is covered by this standard insurance, one can opt to take out additional health insurance cover for, for example, physiotherapy and dental care. In 2016, the average annual premium for addtionnal health insurance reached a value of approximately 319 euros per person.
It is allowed in the Netherlands to cancel one's basic health insurance and change insurance companies every year until the 31st of December. When individuals end their contract before the end of December, their contract will end per January 1st. They can then choose a new health insurance company before February 1st. In 2018, the share of individuals who switched health insurance companies reached a value of approximately 6.3 percent.